Lawmaker, Cop Trade Barbs Over Possible SPD Shift Changes
State Rep. Alan Seabaugh talks about the status of his proposed legislation that would allow 12 hour police shifts and the opposition from SPOA President Michael Carter.
Seabaugh, who introduced the legislation at the bidding of Shreveport Police Chief Ben Raymond, would allow the Chief to consider changing the length of the SPD shifts from the current eight hours to twelve.
Raymond says the change may be necessary because of the current department manpower shortage.
The Seabaugh legislation is needed because state law says that city's with populations exceeding 50,000 must have the eight hour shifts.
But the proposal is being met with opposition from SPD Sergeant Michael Carter, President of the Shreveport Police Officers Association and he (Carter) says, a majority of his group's members.
Seabaugh more than implies that the disagreement between the two has grown personal. "Carter decided to send a letter to people in Shreveport...spreading lies and trying to turn it into something that it isn't," he says, "But the fact of the matter is that as recently as January of this year...Michael Carter, at a civil service meeting, was fussing at Ben Raymond for not (already) going to twelve hour shifts."
Here's what Rep. Seabaugh has to say on the topic, including more comments on SPOA President Carter.
But Carter says he and Chief Raymond have been talking about the longer shifts for more than a year. "We don't have enough people to go to twelve hour shifts," says Carter, explaining that his support was based on a possible emergency declaration. "In the beginning (Raymond) asked me what did I think about twelve hour shifts and I told him I didn't really care for twelve hour shifts, but I do like the rotating days off."
Here are Sergeant Carter's complete thoughts on the proposal and what he thinks is the real motivation behind the idea.